Disney’s Steamboat Willie sails to #1 NFT on OpenSea

The first week of 2024 has been much anticipated by NFT creatives, collaborators, and collectors.

On the 1st of January, Steamboat Willie’s US copyright protection expired. For those that aren’t familiar, Steamboat Willie is one of the earlier versions of Disney’s Mickey Mouse.

Mickey Mouse and Steamboat Willie are iconic creations that have captured audiences for nearly a century. For years, content creators have wanted to use these iconic characters; however, Disney, looking to protect its assets, has closely guarded these cartoon depictions with stringent copyright laws that prevent people from using the likeness of their cartoons — until now.

Steamboat Willie — not to be confused with the latter Mickey Mouse — closely resembles Mickey, minus a few minor details. It is widely accepted as one of the first depictions of Disney’s titular protagonist. 

So, as we enter the new year, Steamboat Willie enters the public domain. By the end of the 1st of January, Steamboat Willie was the top NFT on OpenSea. Another collection called Steamboat Willie, ranked second, and Steamboat Willie’s Riverboat took the third highest spot.

For many, these NFT Steamboat Willies are cult collector’s items. For others, they represent something more significant — the democratic and decentralised function of blockchain, NFTs, and crypto.

Would you buy one?

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *